Publisher Policies


Both electronic and print advertising submitted to the Osteopathic Family Physician (OFP) is reviewed by the ACOFP Editorial committee. The ACOFP has the right to reject any advertisement for any reason, which need not be disclosed to the party submitting the advertisement. Advertising submitted to OFP should clearly identify the advertiser and the product or service being offered. If the advertisement promotes a pharmaceutical product, the full generic name of each active ingredient in the drug product should be clearly listed. The OFP will not deliberately place print or electronic advertising opposite or adjacent to editorial content that discusses the product being advertised or that reports research on the advertised product and The OFP will not publish advertisements that refer to an article in the same issue of a publication. Advertising submitted to OFP should be distinct from editorial and should not appear to be editorial; advertising must not be deceptive or misleading or make false claims. Any advertisements that include an indecent copy or contain negative content of a personal, racial, ethnic, medical, sexual orientation, or religious character will not be accepted.

Solicitation of advertising for OFP will be carried out to fulfill the objective of supporting awareness among health professionals and consumers of useful products and services and to contribute to the financial support of the publications. Acceptance of advertising in OFP shall not be construed, however, as an endorsement, approval, recommendation, warranty, or certification of the products or services by ACOFP or any group affiliated with it. Acceptance also does not imply responsibility on the part of ACOFP to ensure that the advertiser has complied with laws and regulations applicable to the marketing of the products. Acceptance of advertising does not imply that ACOFP has conducted an independent scientific review to validate product safety and efficacy or advertising claims. A company involved in an investigation or enforcement proceeding by a government agency with respect to claims made in the marketing of a product to be advertised in the OFP must inform ACOFP of such investigation, proceeding, or litigation.

Specific Provisions:

  • Products or services must be safe and effective in the practice of medicine or to individuals and their families. A company whose product submitted for advertisement in the OFP journal is being evaluated for safety and effectiveness must so inform ACOFP.
  • Companies submitting new products for the advertisement may be required to provide information about product safety and effectiveness. If there is any question of safety or effectiveness, the appropriate staff person on the Editorial Committee should see a product sample before acceptance/rejection.
  • Advertisements for products that are subject to regulation by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) will be accepted in OFP only if the products have met all FDA requirements to permit general marketing of the products.
  • Advertisements for products subject to FDA approval of both the product and the advertising may be accepted in OFP without further review.
  • Manufacturers whose products are subject to regulation by the FDA or Federal Trade Commission may be asked to submit a signed certification to ACOFP attesting that they have scientifically valid data on file to substantiate product claims or comparisons to other products.
  • Companies submitting advertisements for The Osteopathic Family Physician are required to indemnify the Association against claims based on the advertisements.



An author is an individual who has significantly contributed to the development of a manuscript. ICMJE recommends that authorship be based on the following four criteria:

  1. Substantial contributions to the conception or design of the work; or the acquisition, analysis, or interpretation of data for the work; AND
  2. Drafting the work or revising it critically for important intellectual content; AND
  3. Final approval of the version to be published; AND
  4. Agreement to be accountable for all aspects of the work in ensuring that questions related to the accuracy or integrity of any part of the work are appropriately investigated and resolved.



Individuals who participated in the development of a manuscript but do not qualify as an author should be acknowledged. Organizations that provided support in terms of funding and/or other resources should also be acknowledged.


Changes in authorship

Whenever there is a need to make changes in the authorship of a manuscript or a published article, the changes will be implemented according to COPE specification. Only corresponding authors can make request for a change in authorship.



A submitted manuscript is a confidential material. OFP will not disclose submitted manuscript to anyone except individuals who partake in the processing and preparation of the manuscript for publication (if accepted). These individuals include editorial staff, corresponding authors, potential reviewers, actual reviewers, and editors. However, in suspected cases of misconduct, a manuscript may be revealed to members of Academic Journals’ ethics committee and institutions/organizations that may require it for the resolution of the misconduct. OFP shall follow the appropriate COPE flowcharts wherever necessary.


Conflict of Interest

The OFP journal requires all participants in the peer review and publication process to disclose all relationships that could be viewed as potential conflicts of interest. Editors may use information disclosed in a conflict of interest and financial interest statements as a basis for editorial decisions.

All authors should refer to the OFP Policy Statement on Duality of Interest and submit the relevant conflict of interest statements with OFP’s mandatory Manuscript Submission Form.

In addition, for all manuscript submissions, regardless of article type, all authors should include conflict of interest statements in both the comments to the editors at the time of submission and within the Acknowledgments section of the manuscript itself. If authors have no relevant conflicts of interest to disclose, this should also be indicated in both sections.

Examples of potential conflict of interest include:

  • Employment, membership on the board of directors, or any fiduciary relationship with a third party entity engaged in the development, manufacture, or sale of pharmaceutical or medical devices, supplies, or information
  • Ownership of stock or receipt of honoraria, travel or meeting expenses, or consulting or review fees from a third-party entity, as described above
  • Receipt of financial support or grants for research from a third-party entity, as described above
  • Holding patents or receiving royalties related to the development of pharmaceutical or medical devices, supplies, or information
  • Receipt of writing assistance, medicines, equipment, or administrative support from a third-party entity, as described above
  • Membership on a scientific advisory panel or other standing scientific/medical committee
  • Receipt of payment or honoraria for author contributions or author designation
  • Any other relationships that readers could perceive to have influenced, or that give the appearance of potentially influencing, the content of the submitted work.

Investigators must disclose potential conflicts of interest to study participants and should state in the manuscript whether they have done so.

If the study was sponsored by a third party, authors should describe the role of the study sponsor in study design; collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; writing the report; and the decision to submit the report for publication. If the supporting source had no such involvement, the authors should so state. At the time of submission, OFP requires that the submitting author of a study funded by an agency with a proprietary or financial interest to indicate that she/he had full access to all of the data in the study and takes complete responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis. This author, unless otherwise specified, will be listed in the published version of the article as the "guarantor" of the study.

Please note that the editors may request a statistical analysis of all data by an independent biostatistician, and will decline to consider an article if a sponsor has asserted control over the authors’ right to publish.

Peer reviewers for OFP publications are required to disclose to editors any conflicts of interest that could bias their opinions of the manuscript. Likewise, the Editor and Associate Editors are required to recuse themselves of any final decision on manuscripts for which they may have personal or professional biases. In such cases, a different member of the Editorial Team, or an "Ad Hoc Editor" (e.g., a previous Editor-in-Chief of the journal), will be appointed to adjudicate the review of the manuscript and render a decision on the manuscript.

Authors are encouraged to provide editors with the names of persons they feel should not be asked to review a manuscript because of potential conflicts of interest. Authors should explain their concerns in their comments to the editor at the time of submission; the editors will take this information into account when determining who to invite to review the manuscript.


Correction and retraction of articles

Corrections may be made to a published article with the authorization of the editor of the journal. Editors will decide the magnitude of the corrections. Minor corrections are made directly to the original article. However, in cases of major corrections, the original article will remain unchanged, while the corrected version will also be published. Both the original and corrected version will be linked to each other. A statement indicating the reason for the major change to the article will also be published.


Date and material archiving

OFP expects authors of accepted manuscripts to retain materials for a minimum of 5 years.


Duality of Interest Policy

To identify potential conflicts of interest with appropriate due diligence, journal/ periodical editors must annually disclose any potential conflicts of interest. The disclosed information should be updated by the individual during the year based on changed circumstances of the individual.

Through review of the annual disclosures and review of the agendas of relevant Board, Committee and other meetings, appropriate efforts will be made in advance of the meetings to identify potential conflicts of interest However, each person has the responsibility to report his/her own conflicts of interest (actual or perceived) as those conflicts may arise during a meeting.

The following list outlines several types of transactions that should be considered a potential conflict of interest. Although it is impractical to list every situation that leads to a conflict of interest, this listing includes the minimum circumstances that should be disclosed. In addition, these circumstances not only apply to the individual serving in the Association’s designated position, but also his/her immediate family, defined as spouse/domestic partner, sons, daughters, parents, brothers, sisters, and any person living in the same household as the individual.

Direct Transactions with the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians

  1. Individual is a direct recipient of a grant or honoraria from ACOFP
  2. Individual’s employer receives ACOFP grant other than research (e.g., community outreach grant).
  3. Individual is an employee/ partner/ owner of a company providing goods or services to ACOFP.

Transactions and Relationships with Industry Definition of Industry:
Any corporation, partnership, sole proprietorship, or other legal entity, both for-profit and not-for-profit, engaged in the manufacture, distribution, sale, or reimbursement of diagnostic or therapeutic drugs, devices, supplies, or service for clinical care, research, or education. This definition does not include a physician or other clinician’s practice plan, or reimbursement for clinical services provided to a clinician’s patients. It does not include professional associations, not-for-profit volunteer health organizations, academic institutions or hospitals that provide products or services related to medical care, medical research; or accredited medical education. Examples include pharmaceutical companies and medical device companies.

  1. Individual’s employer receives Industry research funding and the individual is directly involved.
  2. Individual is a direct employee or paid consultant to Industry.
  3. Individual is a recipient of other Industry benefits, such as travel.
  4. Individual is a participant in a speaker’s bureau sponsored by Industry.
  5. Individual is a member of an Industry advisory board or an instructor/speaker at a CME sponsored by Industry.
  6. Individual is a stockholder/investor of an Industry company or inventor of an osteopathic family medicine-related product.
  7. Individual is an employee/ partner/ owner of a company providing goods or services to Industry, and the individual is directly involved.

Transactions and Relationships with Other Companies/Organizations

  1. Individual serving as a senior volunteer to another nonprofit or charity
  2. Individual employed as senior staff of another nonprofit or charity that is not osteopathic family medicine-related



The most common misconduct concerns are addressed in detail below:

  1. Falsification of data: Willful fabrication, omission, or selective reporting of data may occur and the editors will make every effort treat this seriously. Reviewers are asked to contact the editor if they have a suspicion of this type of occurrence.
  2. Authorship: All authors should be acknowledged and authors who did not contribute should not be listed.
  3. Piracy and Plagiarism: Unauthorized material submitted without adequate permission or acknowledgment is a problem and we will address this. Plagiarism generally involves the use of materials from others but can apply to researchers' duplication of their own previously published reports without acknowledgment (self-plagiarism or duplicate publication). Reviewers will discuss this with the editors who will make a plan that may include confrontation of the authors with these concerns and possible rejection of the article may be a result. The intent is difficult to assign.
  4. Inappropriate or fraudulent digital image manipulation: Fraudulent manipulation does not include adjustment of image data that does affect the interpretation of the data. Other adjustments of digital images may be considered misconduct.
  5. Violation of generally accepted research practices: Failure to use accepted practices in proposing or carrying out research or scholarly writing, improper manipulation or presentation of experiments or literature to obtain biased results, deceptive statistical or analysis, or improper reporting of results are examples of misconduct.
  6. Failure to comply with legislative and regulatory requirements affecting research: This may include violations of applicable local regulations, or investigational review and law involving the use of funds, care of animals, human subjects, investigational drugs, recombinant products, new devices or radioactive, biological or chemical materials.
  7. Inappropriate behavior in relation to misconduct: Alleging misconduct is which is not valid is misconduct if the allegation is blatantly false. Withholding or destruction of information relevant to a claim of misconduct and retaliation against persons involved in the allegation or investigation would also represent misconduct.

Response to allegations of possible misconduct
Any allegations of misconduct should be brought to the attention of the OFP editors. OFP Editors will review the allegations and determine the appropriate response that may include one or more of the following options:

  1. Send a letter of explanation to the individual(s) against whom there is a complaint.
  2. Send a letter of reprimand to the individual(s) against whom there is a complaint.
  3. Send a letter of reprimand to all co-authors against whom there is a complaint.
  4. Send a letter outlining the findings to the supervising institution and if appropriate the funding body.
  5. The investigation will be completed even if the authors withdraw the submission.
  6. Reviewers and editors may be accused of misconduct and in this event, they will be replaced while the allegation is reviewed and maybe will be removed from further association with the journal.

Methods of referral
All allegations of referral should go to the managing editor that will refer the issue to the editor- in- chief. In the event that the editor is the accused then the managing editor shall refer the matter to the head of the editorial committee for investigation.


Research Ethics

Human rights, privacy, and confidentiality

Authors must confirm whether explicit written consent to publish has been received from any people described, shown in still or moving images in submitted manuscripts.

Research involving animals should be conducted with the same rigor as research in humans. Authors are encouraged to adhere to animal research reporting standards, such as the ARRIVE reporting guidelines. Authors should state whether experiments were performed in accordance with relevant institutional and national guidelines and regulations, citing compliance with the US National Research Council's "Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals," the US Public Health Service's "Policy on Humane Care and Use of Laboratory Animals," and "Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals."



Editorial Supplements, which are developed by non-profit groups, but sponsored by a pharmaceutical or other company, may be considered to be "under the cover of" OFP (either within an issue or bound separately) if approved in advance by the ACOFP Editorial Committee and the Editor-in-Chief of the journal. If approved, the journal Editor may appoint a special supplement editor to lead the journal’s peer-review process. The supplement editor should be affiliated with ACOFP and should be an expert on the supplement topic. Approved Editorial Supplements should be completed before the transition of a new Editor and editorial team for the journal.

Supplements proposals for OFP should include a planned table of contents or if based on a meeting or symposium, a planned agenda. The proposal should also address:

  • The name of the organization(s) sponsoring and funding the supplement (not merely the name of the public relations agency handling its publication).
  • If the supplement is based on a symposium, where and when the symposium was held and how the speakers and papers were selected.
  • Whether authors were or will be paid and, if so, how much.

If the proposal is approved, it will be forwarded to the Editor of the journal. Initial approval by The ACOFP does not commit the Editor to accept a proposal in whole or part. All manuscripts are subject to the same peer review as other manuscripts in the journal. In addition, ACOFP has adopted the following principles from ICMJE, as outlined in section III-G of ICMJE’s Recommendations for the Conduct, Reporting, Editing, and Publication of Scholarly Work in Medical Journals:

  • The journal editor has complete control of the decision to publish all or any portions of the supplement. Editing by the funding organization is not permitted.
  • The journal editor retains the authority to send supplement manuscripts for external peer review and to reject manuscripts submitted for the supplement.
  • The journal editor must approve the appointment of any external editor of the supplement and take responsibility for the work of the external editor.
  • The sources of funding for the research, publication, and the products the funding source make that are considered in the supplement must be clearly stated and prominently located in the supplement, preferably on each page.
  • Advertising in supplements follows the same policies as those of the rest of the journal.
  • Journal editors and supplement editors may not accept personal favors or personal remuneration from sponsors of supplements.
  • Secondary publication in supplements (republication of papers previously published elsewhere) is not permitted.
  • ACOFP’s principles of authorship, a potential conflict of interest disclosure, and other publication policies also apply to supplements.

Advertising Supplements may be accepted if they meet the following criteria:

  • They do not carry ACOFP’s name or logo.
  • They are not formatted to suggest that they are part of OFP.
  • They are clearly labeled as advertising.
  • They are reviewed and approved by the Editor-in-Chief of the periodical in question, as well as the appropriate ACOFP Editorial staff member.